Winning games helps.
Going to the playoffs is fun and exciting for everyone, from the players and coaches to the supporters of the team and the fans in the stands.
But this year’s Mammoth High School football team was bigger than that just for having taken the field.
After a lost season in which Mammoth had no team at all, the Huskies returned under the wing of their resolute coach, Tom Gault and his industrial-strength assistant coach Marty Thompson – a former Fresno State and Detroit Lions tight end.
They began their comeback season with barely enough players to field a team, but they were there, on the field, alumni players helping out where they could in practices.
On those warm August days during their two-a-day drills, both the varsity and junior varsity worked hard in preparation for their first game in two seasons – a home affair against L.A. Baptist.
And then a miracle.
In mid-season, six members of the Mammoth Mountain Ski Team asked to join the team. Gault put it to a vote and the team said come aboard. It was a needed boost to the thin ranks.
The Huskies finished the season 3-6 with some very humbling defeats, but this was a winning season in the categories that really count – like character and resoluteness, camaraderie and humility.
There’s a saying in sports that as a team matures, it “learns how to win.” And despite their final, 51-20 victory, the Huskies still may be a little bit away from that stage. But they did something bigger.
They learned how to be a team once more, and we loved watching them play the game again.